Domino Sugar Factory Sold And We Can’t Wait for all that “affordable housing”

Via Gothamist:

Brooklyn mega-developer Two Trees, which owns much of DUMBO, is poised to put down deeper roots on the Williamsburg Waterfront, where the big old Domino Sugar refinery awaits the developer’s gentrifying magic touch. The Community Preservation Corporation (CPC), which tried and failed to transform the old refinery into a large mixed-use residential and retail development, has closed on a deal to sell the property to Two Trees for $185 million…

The original plans for the development were ambitious and somewhat controversial—some locals worried about another huge influx of Williamsburg residents overwhelming public transportation (the Bedford L stop is already a shitshow at rush hour). The mixed-use 2,200-unit development was supposed to have 660 units of affordable housing, but Two Trees owner Jed Walentas—who also owns The Wythe Hotel—has not committed to that ratio of affordable-to-obscenely expensive. In fact, Two Trees’ plans for the property are still very much TBD.

CPC’s promise of 30 percent affordable housing was never legally binding, but CPC would have taken advantage of the city’s Inclusionary Housing Program, requiring it to set aside 20% of the units at “affordable” below-market rates. In an interview with the Observer in June, Walentas said, “Regardless of what the deal was with the previous people, it’s been several years and nothing’s gotten built. One of the biggest challenges is to make something happen. I do think affordable housing will be at the top of the list, but there’s a wide array of social benefits this project can offer, from schools to open space to community space.”

Tutu’s: New Bar Opening Today In Bushwick




Lucas Walters is ready to make his grandmother proud — by opening his own cozy drinking haven and christening it with her beloved nickname.
“It looks like an old lady’s house,” Walters laughed of Tutu’s, his corner bar, which is set open Wednesday.

The bar will be located in the former home of The Morgan Restaurant and beside Bushwick’s future boutique hotel.

“We raided our families’ houses for lots of tchotchkes,” he said of the decor.

Walters — a partner at the popular Williamsburg haunt The Commodore — is launching Tutu’s with Jason Merritt, who owns Big Tree Bottles liquor store just down Bogart Street from the new Bushwick business.

“We’re starting with just a cocktail menu and meat and cheese,” Walters said.

He added that he hoped to offer gastropub fare including burgers, salads and brunch by November.

New Fancy Cocktails Joint, The Exley, Now Open


If you’re a true lush, then you’re likely familiar with the work of Frederick Exley, a daytime drinker/author of works like A Fan’s Notes. He was the prime chronicler of literary drinking in 1960s New York, and now there’s a bar named after him. The Exley, located near McCarren Park in Williamsburg, is owned by the former general manager of Tailor, and it’s being billed as a casual “third space” for neighborhood residents (aka those who can’t stomach another trip to nearby Union Pool). We suppose you can think of it as the boozy Starbucks – it’s housed in a former auto-body repair shop and features colorful murals by local artists.

It’s a small space, with seating for about 35 patrons. The cocktail list focuses on classic American libations and a menu of small bites like sea salt pretzels and a cheese plate will be served. The official opening date is tomorrow, get more information here (1 Jackson Street).

More at

Williamsburg Multiplex Delayed


Williamsburg’s first new multiplex cinema has missed the summer season, and a premiere night is not in sight.

Months after the new Williamsburg Cinemas was slated to open, the moviehouse is sitting unfinished on the corner of Grand Street and Driggs Avenue as developers struggle to fit all of its seven viewing rooms into the corner lot.

“Fitting seven auditoriums on an 8,500-square-foot site is difficult,” said Robert McCall of Philadelphia-based JKR Partners, which is the architect on the project.

McCall said he is confident the theater will open before the lucrative holiday movie season, but wouldn’t pinpoint a date.

The Williamsburg Cinemas is owned by the same people who run the successful Cobble Hill Cinemas on Court Street between Butler and Douglass streets, and are expected to host the same mix of mainstream and indie films. It will be the first major moviehouse in the neighborhood.

Transmitter Park Will Finally Open On Saturday


The long awaited WNYC Transmitter Park will open in Greenpoint on Saturday, park officials told The New York Post today. The waterfront space, named after its former use as a location for a WNYC radio transmissions tower, is on 1.6 acres between Greenpoint Ave and Kent Street, steps from the India Street stop on the East River Ferry. The project cost $12 million and took two years to complete.

According to the Post, the park is the first piece of 50 acres of parkland that Bloomberg promised north Brooklyn as part of the 2005 rezoning that so drastically changed the area.

Greenpointers says the park will have an open law, play area, bird garden, and café. A new pier is still under construction.

Greenpoint to Explode Tonite

We can blame Buscemi:

An eruption is about to rock parts of Greenpoint and Manhattan, officials warned, when HBO drama “Boardwalk Empire” shoots tonight.

The Prohibition-era show produced by Martin Scorcese will film an explosion near Commercial and Franklin streets, the city’s Notify NYC alerts source tweeted yesterday — and the sounds will likely reverberate throughout the neighborhood and across the water, an email sent by Manhattan Community Board 6 noted.

“This shoot will include a large fire-ball effect residents in surrounding communities and Manhattan may be able to see and hear,” the email said.
Residents can expect to hear the blast between 10 p.m. – 11 p.m.


Heavy Rains Flooding Brooklyn and Queens

(Woodbine street in Bushwick via)

Gothamist has more pictures, as does Gawker.

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